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Date:Friday 30 May 1947
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-54B-15-DO (DC-4)
Operator:Eastern Air Lines
Registration: NC88814
MSN: 18380
First flight: 1944
Total airframe hrs:3623
Crew:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Passengers:Fatalities: 49 / Occupants: 49
Total:Fatalities: 53 / Occupants: 53
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:3 km (1.9 mls) E of Bainbridge, MD (   United States of America)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Newark International Airport, NJ (EWR/KEWR), United States of America
Destination airport:Miami International Airport, FL (MIA/KMIA), United States of America
Eastern Air Lines Flight 605 departed Newark Airport, New Jersey, USA at 17:04 for a domestic flight to Miami, Florida.
The DC-4 climbed to its assigned cruising altitude of 4000 feet and the crew made position reports at 17:10 and 17:27 hours.
About 17:41 witnesses saw the aircraft enter a steepening dive until it struck the ground at high speed in a partially inverted attitude. The aircraft impacted moderately to densely wooded area with trees 60-70 feet high.

The investigation of this accident was at the time the most intensive in the history of the Civil Aeronautics Board's Safety Bureau.
It was found that the empennage disintegrated during the dive but whether failure of the empennage and/or its controls was an effect or a cause of the dive was not discovered.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was a sudden loss of control, for reasons unknown, resulting in a dive to the ground."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAB
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year and 1 months
Accident number: File No. 1 0049-47
Download report: Final report
Language: English

Cause undetermined
Loss of control

» CAB File No. 1 0049-47


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This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Newark International Airport, NJ to Miami International Airport, FL as the crow flies is 1739 km (1087 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Douglas DC-4

  • 1242 built
  • 71st loss
  • 36th fatal accident
  • The worst accident (at the time)
  • 16th worst accident (currently)
» safety profile

 United States of America
  • The worst accident (at the time)
  • 54th worst accident (currently)
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